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Zero Lower Bound and negative interest rates: Choices for monetary policy in the UK

Muhammad Ali Nasir

Journal of Policy Modeling, 2021, vol. 43, issue 1, 200-229

Abstract: There have been relatively few analyses of the policy context and consequences of a Zero Lower Bound (ZLB) for nominal interest rates. This paper sets out monetary policy alternatives, including negative interest rates, a revision of the inflation target, and rendering unconventional policy instruments such as QE conventional (permanent). Following extensive discussion of policy options, we set out a model that explores the impacts of the real policy rate on economic growth, employment and inflation, with particular attention to the British economy. We use a Time-Varying Structural Vector Auto-regressive (TVSVAR) Model where the sources of time variation are both the coefficients and variance–covariance matrix of the innovations. It was found that real rates have significant implications for real growth, the labour market and price stability even when monetary policy was constrained at the ZLB in nominal terms. The study additionally applies a discrete break in the data to focus on the Post-Global Financial Crisis and ZLB period. This indicates that the effectiveness of real rates did not diminish and this has important implications in terms of a policy approach which seeks to exploit real negative rates.

Keywords: Zero Lower Bound; Negative interest rates; Monetary policy; Quantitative easing; Policy coordination; Fiscal policy; TVSVAR model (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C11 E23 E31 E43 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jpolmod.2020.03.014

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